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From: John Lerch <>
Subject: re IE
Date: Tue, 08 Aug 2006 16:37:50 -0500


Ethan wrote
Mallory also uses this principle, but in pinpointing this spot, he uses
"Italic, Venetic, Illyrian, Germanic, Baltic, Slavic, Thracian, Greek, and
possibly both Armenian and Phrygian," but I take issue with this unqualified
list. In seeking the place where IE was first spoken, it's reasonable to
take into account which languages are oldest, but many of these are
relatively young. Italic and Venetic date from the 6th C BC, Germanic from
the 2nd C AD, Baltic from the 16th C AD, Slavic from the 9th C AD, and
Armenian from the 5th C AD.

Where on earth do you get Baltic from the 16th century AD? There is
written OLD Prussian that is older that and it's almost
indistinguishable from some living dialects of Latvian.
Latvian/Lithuanian looks like Sanskrit and many people who speak one or
the other say about the other--"Oh yeah, I get what they're saying."
And surely Sanskrit has been separate from the Baltics since more like
the 16th century BC.
JAL
Again, for those who haven't read Atkinson's study, it

> is really worth reading, if only for the unusual
> branch groupings, such as Albanian with the languages
> of India. The very close linguistic relationship
> between Armenian and Greek is certainly intriguing as
> well (though this was not a novel discovery by
> Atkinson & Gray). Phrygians close relationship with
> the Balkan languages is also provocative. Perhaps a
> Balkan rather than a Russia homeland is not so
> farfetched.



Perhaps, but I also find the apparent loanwords from Proto-Semitic and
Sumerian compelling, shifting things eastward a bit.

Ethan


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